Extremists disrupt Yoga Day event in Maldives. Photograph:( Others )
The statement emphasized that "such malicious acts of violence aimed at disrupting public safety and undermining security of individuals and the diplomatic corps will not be tolerated".
Maldives govt on Tuesday was quick to condemn the yoga day violence, even as President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih announced an investigation. The Maldives foreign ministry in a strongly worded statement condemned the "violent acts perpetrated by a group of individuals targeting the participants, including members of the diplomatic community". The statement emphasized that "such malicious acts of violence aimed at disrupting public safety and undermining security of individuals and the diplomatic corps will not be tolerated".
Dramatic visual emerged as Yoga Day event was disrupted by extremist elements in Maldives' national capital Male. The Yoga Day event was organized by Indian High Commission in Maldives, along with Ministry of Youth, Sports and Community Empowerment and UN Maldives. Maldivian Minister of Youth and Sports, Indian High commissioner and Maldives Foreign Secretary were present as were many High Commissioners and UN resident coordinator when the shocking incident happened involving the attack on Yoga practitioners.
Maldives President had taken to twitter over the incident, calling it a "matter of serious concern and those responsible will be swiftly brought before the law." The Maldives Police Service (MPS) has launched a high priority investigation into the incident. The Serious and Organized Crime Department of the Crime Investigation Command is investigating this incident and 6 people have been taken into custody.
Police has said Opposition Party Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) had a role in the act of violence. A statement by the Police department said, "As of now, the evidence indicates that the demonstrators were using items taken from the office of the Progressive Party of the Maldives (PPM)." The PPM party is led by Maldives President Yameen who is known for his anti-India views and spearheaded the so-called India out campaign. During his tenure, he had taken a distinctly pro-China stance, something that is being attributed the debt crisis in the country.
An investigation has been launched by @PoliceMv into the incident that happened this morning at Galolhu stadium.— Ibrahim Mohamed Solih (@ibusolih) June 21, 2022
This is being treated as a matter of serious concern and those responsible will be swiftly brought before the law.
International Yoga Day is celebrated on the 21st of June every year. The United Nations declared the day as International Day of Yoga by consensus on 11 December 2014, through a resolution which was co-sponsored by a record of 177 countries, including the Maldives.
Meanwhile, speaking to Wion, Ali Nazeer, Maldives minister of state for home affairs and spokesperson of Adhaalath party said, 'Maldives police service is investigating the incident" & "key individuals involved are under police custody". He explained, "we believe that this act of violence is aimed at achieving political end. And involvement of political opposition (PPM) in this is worrying".